Posted by SuperWooper on 13 October 2019 with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

Mugen no Juunin: Immortal

Short Synopsis: A young woman seeking revenge for the murder of her family hires an immortal swordsman as a bodyguard.

Lenlo’s review:

Blade of the Immortal is an odd one. From the beginning, you can see how limited the budget/time for the series is. As it has to be one of those two, since Immortal won’t be winning any animation awards any time soon. What it lacks in animation though, the series has in style/direction. As the series is very interesting to look at most of the time with how it composes its shots. Even throwing in some mixed media charcoal animation in there to help recreate the rough look of the manga. Still, while I find it visually interesting… the pacing concerns me. Its advertised as a “complete” adaptation, and I always thought that was ridiculous. But it’s burning through content to get there. Skipping over a lot of dialogue to get to more important story beats. It leaves me very concerned for how the story will end up pacing wise, and with the limited animation and 2 cour aspect of the series… I give it a 50/50 shot of not screwing this up terribly.

Potential: 50%

Wooper’s review:

We’ve finally arrived at the stage of the season where the more anticipated productions start rolling out. Blade of the Immortal has a strong reputation in manga circles, so there are a lot of folks looking forward to the anime on that basis. On the other hand, my interest is due to Hiroshi Hamasaki’s occupation of the director’s chair. This new adaptation is reminiscent of his work on Shigurui, owing to its graphic violence and oppressive atmosphere. The brutality of this episode didn’t always grab me like it did in that series, however; several computer-assisted shots of faces being sliced apart were distracting, and the quick subliminal cuts during the episode-opening massacre were too stylized for my liking. Thankfully, the episode takes a more natural approach when introducing its cast. Hamasaki uses pillow shots of flora and fauna as a contrast to the characters’ pallid designs and agonized facial expressions, creating a heavy mood that’s broken up in just the right places. When the episode descends into bloodshed once more near the end, the impact is much greater thanks to that middle section. The series boasts an intriguing setup, cool sound design, and some nice landscapes, but the action scenes themselves leave much to be desired – they’ll be one of my major measuring sticks for this show going forward.

Potential: 65%


Assassin’s Pride

Short Synopsis: An assassin, posing as a teacher, decides to teach his mark to fight instead of killing her.

Amun’s review:

A few things stand out from this highly anticipated show. First, I feel anime as a whole is in a transitional period where traditional animation and CGI are becoming unified. Assassin’s Pride does about as good a job as I’ve seen blending the two, but it’s not 100% seamless. Secondly, the setting is wonderful – I love the unique world, the candlestick, the train…pretty much all the things that CGI helps you do better. Great job. Now the downsides. If you watched the recent show Angel of Death, this premiere has too many similarities – and that should be cause for concern. While I think the exposition as to why our “pro” assassin just betrayed everyone and everything he stood for is close to believable, I think they could have stretched it out just a tad more for me to buy it fully. Finally, the direction is a little odd – we saw far too many shots with the characters 75% out of it (and at weird angles too). Overall, I’m interested to see where it goes (for the CGI if nothing else), but there are some real causes for concern. (Also our MC is literally from the guild called “White Night” and does the Naruto run…meme anime of the season?).

Potential: 40%

Lenlo’s review:

Why does everything have to be so mixed this season? Because somehow, Pride manages to have some good animation mixed into a scene where they can’t match up bullet trails to the guns shooting them. As far as legitimate criticisms of the series itself, my only complaint is our lead Kufa, who might as well just be Kirito. Just as strong, just as emotionless, and just as bland as any other series MC. Winning maidens hearts by saving them in battle, etc etc. You know the drill, though it does end with a bit of a mystery (though his last name more than likely gives it away). So maybe something good will come from him. Outside of him though, I actually saw a lot of things I liked. Such as the almost Kingdom Hearts sort of setting. What with the different districts and “lantern”. Unlike other series this season, Pride also actually built that into its presentation of its world. Giving an artificial sky box for day in a world of eternal night, an extensive lantern system and a lot of darker lit scenes to fit the setting of the series. Meanwhile our female lead, Melida, seems to actually have a personality and motivations. So there is at least one character worth liking. I think if Pride can use its setting, the strongest aspect of it so far, well then it could rise above most of the rest of the season. Not terribly high mind you, I think things like Soul Eater do this sort of setting better, but hey. Getting mentioned in the same sentence as something like Soul Eater is a step above most everything else this season. So it’s not that bad.

Potential: 65%


No Guns Life

Short Synopsis: SF hard-boiled the gun smoke drifts muzzle talks.

Wooper’s review:

After reading the first few chapters of the manga for the season preview, my expectations for No Guns Life were low, but they needn’t have been – I was impressed by what I saw here. The premiere’s noir atmosphere is supported by moody lighting and a subdued color palette, but neither of these elements threaten to dominate the episode. Though lots of characters are partially shadowed, the action scenes are set in sufficiently bright parts of the city, and the use of pinks and purples alongside the usual browns and blacks gives NGL a retro-futuristic look. Almost all the backgrounds are 3DCG, which is also used to animate tough subjects like trains or bodies of water. For the most part, this decision works to create a sleek vibe that nevertheless feels slightly off (which matches the political corruption of the city). As for characters and story, gun-headed Juuzo is a strong lead, with quips for days masking a sheepish streak. He’s gotten himself involved in a plot that gets a bit dull whenever the show stops to dish out details, but the concept of a lone private eye pitting himself against a dystopian government is a winner at its core. I’ll be following this one for a full season unless it goes off the rails midway through.

Potential: 70%

Amun’s review:

Oh man, this is great! Throw away those fears of No Guns Life being just a gun otaku show – we have ourselves a mix of Black Lagoon/Trigun/Gangsta/Weird Gun Helmet (…the last one is not a real show). I love the city, love the setting, love the main character. The designs are pretty odd, but they strangely work given the context. I’ve yet to see a PI/wiseguy actually embodied as a gun (well, two guns apparently? Little bit of Vash going on there), but I’m excited. Dystopia, gritty city with PI vs Big Corp? Madhouse production? As my colleague above said, that’s a winner to me. Only thing I’ll disagree with Wooper on is the potential rating…I’m following this all the way, even if it goes Gangsta on me.

Potential: 100%

One Response

  1. Avatar evafan says:

    Mugen no Juunin is interesting.

    It is pure. Not the best thing ever, but some genius took all the anime crap I always complain about out and left only the essentials.

    Anyway, I recommend this. 3rd ep was great.

    Couple more notes:
    – 0 moe, 0 kids, 0 screaming, 0 comedy, 0 rainbow colors, 0 politics, 0 progressive crap
    – single plot line
    – refreshing as F
    – glad they didn’t cast Nana Mizuki as the main girl, the main guy is pushing it already…
    – seems to have a thing for stoic characters
    – better than Champloo or Aoi Bungaku’s 2nd story
    – Sword of the Stranger: The Series + chicks – kids – evil Chinese aliens
    – the antagonist (Kagehisa Anotsu)’s voice actor (Sasaki Nozomu) has Godly voice – Godly. He did Johan (Monster) (yeah…), Karl (Blood+), M (Death Note), Tetsuo (Akira) and so on. I’m so thrilled to have him here
    – washed out colors in combination with the intensity and sheer violence is a lot like (earlier) Claymore + there’s direct copy of Clare herself in the 3rd ep. God I miss Clamore
    – also similar to Ergo Proxy, similar serious show tightly focused on small cast, episodic with main thread, bleak colors, adventure and seeking out meaning. God I miss Ergo Proxy

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